Reinforcing Your Brand Series #3 – Campaigns that Teach Us

It’s important you also provide learning opportunities for your audiences. Many people have never needed a lawyer and wouldn’t have the faintest idea of what to expect or how to go about getting help. You don’t need to tell them how much you care and are there to help. You need to show them. When you teach someone something that will help them protect themselves and the people they care about, you position yourself as a trusted resource and ally.

  • With humor and drama, you’ve got the emotional appeal covered. Informational ampaigns are important because they have a rational appeal, rounding out your audience reach.
  • They let future clients know that you are exceptionally knowledgeable,
    transparent and genuinely committed to protecting their interests.
  • Informational campaigns give you the chance to reveal all the features, benefits and unique selling points of your practice, such as your experience, results and dedication to customer service highlights. Your “Because”….so to speak.
  • And finally, they go a long way to preemptively establishing a sense of trust in you that makes it more likely that an accident victim will remember to call you when they need you. Let Network Affiliates be your trusted business ally. To learn more about how we can help elevate your brand and drive attention to your firm, give us a call at 800-525-3332 and ask for Tammy Kehe! Network Affiliates… where collaboration and creativity redefine legal advertising.

Reinforcing Your Brand Series #2 – Campaigns That Move Us

The world of legal advertising is often synonymous with facts, figures, and fine print. But it can be so much more than that! To capture your audience’s attention, it’s critical that you include messaging that captivates, engages, and leaves a lasting impression on your audience. Using dramatic elements can help you do just that.

  • Commercials that are dramatic engage viewers by tapping into emotions such as empathy, tension and excitement, making your brand more memorable.
  • Drama allows for a unique kind of storytelling and narrative arc which can immediately capture people’s attention and investment in what they’re seeing.
  • Because of this storytelling structure of conflict and resolution, audiences are more likely to stick with the commercial to see how the messaging resolves itself. In this context, that would be hearing from you.
  • Studies show that emotional connections can lead to a deeper understanding of the message. When you resolve the drama at the end of the commercial, viewers see you as a problem solver in their minds.
  • When we create longer format dramatic pieces there is an additional opportunity for exposure, such as through sharing the full stories on your website and parsing out the story via social media.

When we create dramatic campaigns, we walk a very tight rope, and there’s a fine line that we are very careful not to cross. This is another reason why we keep reinforcing that a well-rounded, strategic creative approach is essential. Executed with thoughtfulness and inclusiveness, your advertising strategy will educate, inspire, and touch the very core of all human emotions.

Let Network Affiliates’ targeted results captivate you! Give us a call at 800-525-3332 and ask for Tammy Kehe! Network Affiliates… where collaboration and creativity redefine legal advertising.

Behind the Scenes with Dino Colombo

Puppies, Babies, and Ugly Christmas Sweaters”– not your typical trial lawyer’s
day at work! Our production day with Dino Colombo, his son Nathan, also a trial lawyer,
and attorney Travis Mohler was a blast! Together, we’re creating unique advertising
campaigns, building the Colombo Law brand and awareness like no other! Oh, the
stories we could tell!

You may wonder why we occasionally post pictures from “behind the scenes”. At Netaff,
we’re incredibly proud of the relationships we have with our clients. These commercial
shoot days may be long and arduous, but we have a lot of fun along the way, and the
end-product is unparalleled. We will do everything we can to make sure you’re as
comfortable, relaxed and feeling as confident as possible. And… for those of you who
request a little extra performance coaching, we can provide that too! Before you know it,
you’ll be taking home your own NetAffie!

Great performances may take time, but, with the NetAff family, you will most definitely
have a blast along the way.

Netaff: where collaboration and creativity redefine legal advertising.”

Live Your Brand Promise

– by Tammy Kehe

What’s your brand promise? First of all, your brand isn’t your firm name, your logo, or even your business’s specialty. Brands are perceptions that live in the hearts and minds of people. They’re about the emotional and psychological connection a person experiences with you, your law firm and the service you provide. What’s more, the apex of successful brand building isn’t just to be well known or recognizable…it’s to be respected, trusted, and even loved.

Which brings us to defining your firm’s brand promise. What’s your firm’s “because”? What makes your brand better, special, and the best choice for representation in your market’s legal landscape?

When people talk about your business behind closed doors, what are they saying? What do you hope they say? Imagine a former client is referring your firm to a friend or family member. They might say: “You should call them because they were there for me every step of the way and you can trust them.”

When your employees, clients, neighbors, friends, referral sources, and other thought leaders talk about your law firm, they need something differentiating, elevating, compelling, and honest to say about the relationships and experiences had by those who work with you—that’s your brand promise.

If you’d like to know how Network Affiliates can help you get the most out of your brand and your brand promise, we’d love to hear from you. Call us today at 888-461-1016, or let us know you’re interested online, and we’ll get in touch with you.

Grow Your Marketing Investment with Superior Media Analytics

Of all the ways to collect competitive data, our network of successful attorneys consistently relies on competitive market analyses and media audits to identify valuable information and to make effective budget decisions.

These proven approaches are essential to any legal practice, but especially critical to:

  • Longtime advertisers facing new competition
  • Young attorneys or new law firms looking to break into a market
  • All firms seeking greater Share of Voice (SOV)

But what are market analyses and media audits, exactly? How do you know if your law firm needs one?

What Is a Competitive Market Analysis?

competitive market analysis provides a clear overview of the legal advertising activity happening within a designated market area (DMA) — both yours and your competitors’.

Among other things, a market analysis will reveal:

  • Share of Voice (SOV) for all legal advertisers in a market
  • Market shifts and new entrants to the legal vertical
  • Who the top spenders are
  • How much they spend per month and per year
  • Where they’re placing ads
  • What their creative looks like and what their messaging sounds like

The very fact that this competitive information is available comes as a huge surprise to many lawyers who aren’t familiar with top marketing resources such as Nielsen TV and Audio Ratings, Strata Analytics, and Kantar Media—the world’s largest data, insights, and consulting company.

Each of these marketing resources requires a significant capital investment—one that rarely makes sense for a law firm to make. Thankfully, our client roster enjoys access to these powerful tools via the Network, which includes the expert analysis of a dedicated account manager and a team of experienced media planners and buyers.

If you’re a current advertiser, the “competitive” part of a competitive marketing analysis will also reveal:

  • How much you’re spending relative to competitors
  • How your creative, messaging, and branding differ from competitors
  • Where your advertising overlaps with competitors; and much more

Side note: so far, we’ve only talked about television, but it’s also valuable to perform a competitive market analysis on digital properties (e.g. website, social media, PPC, etc.) to see how your brand compares online. 

What Is a Media Audit?

media audit is a comprehensive analysis of an entire advertising campaign. For example, a media audit might ask:

  • Are there television programs or dayparts that would be a better fit for your strategy (i.e. produce better results)?
  • Are you running spots of different lengths? Is there a better combination of five, 10, 15, 30, and 60-second spots that would improve your reach, frequency, and ROI?
  • Did the station deliver what you paid for? Did the programming deliver the ratings negotiated?

The information discovered in these audits has helped many law firms realize real savings or turn the tide in a competitive market. What’s more, a media audit can be performed again and again to optimize results and increase your return on investment.

Television advertising dollars are finite. A media audit can help you make sure you’re investing each dollar in the most efficient way.

More importantly, there’s an art to media audits, and not everyone approaches them the same way.

Information is your best investment tool in an increasingly competitive legal landscape.

But if you’re doing it right, attorney marketing is about making strategic investment decisions based on data and reliable analysis. You too can grow your marketing investment with superior media analytics.  

Network Affiliates is an attorney marketing agency headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado. For nearly 40 years, we’ve been providing exclusive media partnerships and superior marketing services to elite attorneys around the world.

To learn more about Network Affiliates or to schedule a free competitive market analysis and/or media audit call 888-461-1016 or fill out this quick contact form and we’ll get in touch with you.


The 2018 Attorney Television Advertising Checklist

How to Make the Most of Your Legal Marketing Budget in the New Year

As we move into a new year, the legal services market remains one of the top spending areas in the entire advertising industry.

In 2016 alone, law firms and other legal service providers in the United States spent more than $1 billion on marketing and advertising.

One billion dollars!

What a staggering sum. If the attorney world ever feels small, this number illustrates just how expansive and crowded it really is… and just how profitable it is.

Clients and cases are everywhere. Your firm’s goal is to get more of them — or, just as worthwhile, to get better and higher-value cases.

Your challenge, however, is that many other firms exist in your area, and they’re spending toward that same goal.

Who will prospective clients ultimately choose? It’s more important than ever that your law firm’s messaging stand out from the competition.

As a legal TV advertiser, one of your single biggest monthly expenses is your media budget. Is it working hard enough for you? Here’s why it needs to.

Lawyer television advertising grew six times faster than all other industries’ ad spending between 2008 and 2014.

That fact comes directly from the 2015 Trial Lawyer Marketing report, prepared for the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform, and it’s astounding. The report also projected that attorney TV ad spending would either hold steady or continue to grow despite any political or economic trends.

Sure enough, the report was right. Legal services TV spending kept growing in 2015 and into 2016, even while other reliably big-spend industries (e.g. automotive) cut back.

So what does this all mean? TV advertising is not dead. On the contrary, it remains the single most powerful tool you have for growing your firm.

Still, marketing dollars are finite, and competition is dense. You have to make choices about where and how you’re expending your budget. Accordingly, we present our annual checklist for maximizing both impact and ROI for your attorney television advertising in 2018.

The Checklist

  • Start with a Media Audit. There’s a good chance you may be spending too much money each month… or just spending it in the wrong places. A media audit is an incredibly detailed look at your current performance and, perhaps even more importantly, opens your eyes to opportunities you could be getting from different channels, programs, days of the week, times of day, etc. It’s a worthwhile way of making sure you’re getting the biggest bang for your investment.
  • Focus on creative TV production.Today, the most effective attorney ads look more like short films than television commercials. (See some examples here.) Conventional lawyer ads are passé, and TV viewers simply tune them out. Stated differently, they’re a waste of money. If you haven’t already, 2018 is the time to advance your message and marry it with superior-quality production values. Cinematic visual elements, excellent sound quality, personable voice over, tight editing… all these things matter. And in 2018, they’re more affordable than you might realize.
  • You MUST have a digital marketing strategy to complement your TV ads. Your digital assets (website, social media, PPC campaigns, etc.) will never replace your TV campaigns, nor do they pack quite the same punch. But the internet is simply too important to ignore. A funny thing happens along The Client Journey today… new prospective clients often become leads through your TV ads, but then they visit your website before contacting you. Today’s generation wants that digital reassurance. You need to give it to them by being easy to find online (SEO, content marketing, etc.) and having web content that complements the branding you have on TV. It’s essential.
  • Pinpoint your message – only ask for the cases you really want. You can’t have everything, so don’t ask for everything. Let’s be honest… you don’t want a lot of small, low-value cases, so why would you pitch for them in your ads? Likewise, why shoot for cases that are beyond your resources or reach? Instead, use your marketing to target the types of cases you (A) actually want and (B) can realistically handle well. Those are the cases that will ultimately boost your bottom line and lead to more client referrals in the future.
  • Get out of your own head. When crafting your marketing messages, avoid only emphasizing yourself, your credentials, your experience, or anything “you.” It’s not about you. It’s about your clients. Going into 2018, are your messages currently “you”-oriented or “client”-oriented?
  • Employ the experts. Lawyers are brilliant and highly competent people, but they simply don’t have the time to navigate the extremely complicated and competitive world of television, media buys, digital marketing, graphic design, etc. It is a full-time career all its own. Hire people who have real expertise and who can do what you can’t: devote their full attention to growing your business. Work with an expert legal advertising coach to understand your wisest course of action and investment for 2018.

Don’t Put a Single Penny to Unfruitful Use in 2018. Call the Experts at Network Affiliates.

If you are considering adding a TV advertising strategy to your marketing mix — or if your current approach needs some work — call the legal marketing experts at Network Affiliates today.

Likewise, if you need to supplement your existing campaigns with a highly effective and affordable digital marketing strategy for your law firm, give us a call.

With in-house creative, production, and media planning teams, we can handle all your TV advertising needs from beginning to end. We offer support at every step of the way. Contact us online or call us at (888) 461-1016 now!

A Marketing Lesson Lawyers Can’t Learn Soon Enough

The single biggest mistake lawyers make in their marketing messages is making everything about themselves — their track record, their years in practice, their education, the unique advantages they have over other attorneys, etc.

“What’s wrong with that?” you might ask. Well, nothing, except that these kinds of lawyer-focused messages miss the single most important point when it comes to messaging: It’s not about you.

It’s about the client.

It’s about their emotions, their financial concerns, recovering from their injuries, their fear of lawyers, and their strong desire to get justice and quickly put this whole mess behind them… that’s what legal marketing is about.

Look at your website and/or television advertising copy. How much of it is I/Us/Our language vs. You/Your/Your family language?

There’s certainly a time and a place for you to outline your impressive track record and the skillset you bring to the table. But that cannot be the focus. If it is, you’re just like every other firm, which means you have no measurable advantage over your competition.

The most effective messaging will speak directly to the prospective client’s emotional plight. It will come from a place of authentic passion.

They need to see and feel that your services are about them and their interests.

The quicker your firm understands this and implements it, the better. Most of your rivals probably haven’t put this insight to work in their own messaging yet (lawyer-focused messaging is still the norm), so there’s an opportunity for you to pull ahead of your competitors — even if they’re outspending you.

Stand Out From Your Competition

It’s human nature to repeat what we see. Our clients are often tempted to repeat the tactics they’ve seen a hundred other attorneys use on the airwaves, and we understand that impulse. Furthermore, “zigging” while others zag can feel almost intimidating.

Once upon a time, you could get some mileage out of conventional tactics like:

  • Dramatized testimonials
  • Flashy settlement figures, dollar sums, and firm statistics
  • “Speed-and-greed” talk
  • Partners huddled in front of a bookcase with the usual “If you’ve been injured…” script

But these tactics do not work anymore, and for several years now, we have been consciously steering our clients away in a much more effective and productive messaging direction.

The legal advertising space is far too crowded for you to risk blending in with the crowd.

Tell a Story

Your messaging needs to be about the people you represent and serve. You must create a story (one worth telling!) and craft your brand narrative around that.

Think outside the box. Grab viewers’ attention. Tap into their emotions first; persuade with pitches later.

We put together a guide to crafting stories that legal clients will respond to. It’s the very process we use when brainstorming a new message or TV campaign for our clients.

Make Better Messaging. Let’s Tell Stories Together.

We can help. Network Affiliates is a legal marketing agency that specializes in creative advertising for attorneys. For more than 35 years, we’ve been putting law firms on the airwaves and, for the last 20 years, bolstering their digital marketing efforts at the same time.

In fact, we made some of the very first legal commercials ever broadcast on U.S. television, and we’ve continued to develop, advance and expand our strategies ever since.

Let us put you on the cutting edge and ahead of your competitors. Give us a call at 877.709.0633 or contact us online today.

ATTN: Legal TV Advertisers, Do You Really Know Your Competition?

We often talk about adopting a mindset of success. It’s probably the single most important step you’ll take in the world of legal advertising and marketing. The most effective legal marketers are those who understand that success is challenging but also entirely attainable.

Inherent in the whole “mindset of success” is having a plan. Once you’ve made the decision to advertise your firm on television and to fund that investment — but before your ad appears on the air — you need to commit yourself to preparation.

You aren’t just running an ad, you see. You’re entering a market. And just as your firm’s founders needed to know a little something about the local law firm scene before hanging their shingle, you need to understand your local/regional television market before putting your own campaign in the mix.

Specifically, you need to know the who, what, when, where, why, and how of your rival law firms’ television advertising campaigns.

This is where a very calculated and data-driven TV advertising strategy comes into play. You’ll need to dig deep to make a lot of decisions about your campaign. Some questions that we usually start with are:

  • Who are you up against?
  • Who do you need to reach?
  • How much are you prepared to spend?

But before you answer any of those questions, you need to know how your competitors are answering them. We call that Competitive Analysis, and it’s an early and integral part of our approach to any legal advertising campaign.

What is a Competitive Analysis?

A competitive analysis doesn’t need to be more complicated than it sounds. At its core, it simply means informing yourself about your market so that you can make the wisest possible decisions concerning your investment.

Still, asking the right questions can make sure your analysis is getting you where you need to be.

When going to work for our clients, for instance, we always research:

  • Who is your competition?
  • What kind of content are they running?
  • When and where are they airing their campaigns?
  • What is their brand message?
  • How much are they spending?
  • What do their results look like?
  • What will it take for you to “steal” an adequate share of voice (SOV) and compete?

By looking at the spends, placement, and messaging among current advertisers, you can quickly visualize what you’ll need to do to make an impact.

If you go in too soft, you won’t gain enough share of voice (SOV) for your investment to pay off. At the same time, you don’t want to over-invest unnecessarily. Through a careful competitive analysis, you can land in the sweet spot and reap the best results.

The Goal Isn’t to Copy Your Competitors

Studying your competitors’ efforts doesn’t mean replicating them. On the contrary, your goal is to stand out.

Most of today’s law firms are advertising ineffectively. They run self-congratulatory messages that fail to resonate with their target audience. That’s certainly true in the PI market, where injury victims are simply more concerned with their own well-being than with a law firm’s impressive résumé.

Indeed, much of the value in a competitive analysis is learning what not to do. By observing the zig, you’ll learn how best to zag.

How to Do a Competitive Market Analysis

If you’ve generally kept yourself tuned into the local television market, you might already have a sense of how local legal service providers are representing themselves on TV. That’s helpful. But we also like to strive for something more precise than a “general impression” of the competitive landscape.

To get that, we recommend that you:

  • Visit competitors’ websites. (What appeals to you there? What doesn’t?)
  • Find a non-attorney friend who’s willing to watch a few commercials (yours and your competitors) and share their honest impressions.
  • Create a notes document on your smartphone. Anytime you see an ad or a marketing maneuver you think reflects well on your competitor, make a quick note of it.
  • The next time you gather feedback from a client, ask about their experiences with other law firms in the area.
  • Become a customer! Submit a question and find out just how quickly and effectively the competition responds to their prospective clients. What kind of follow-up do they provide?
  • Ask yourself whether your competitors are following our advice in this article. Based on their successes and/or shortcomings, do you have an opportunity to outshine them?

Let Network Affiliates Size Up Your Competition

Advertising is all about connecting with your audience in a more effective way than your competitors. We can help you meet that goal. Network Affiliates is a team of legal marketing strategists with years of deep experience, and we are absolutely committed to putting our clients on top. We do it everyday.

Learn more about how we can help. Call (888) 461-1016 or contact us online today.

Make Your Law Firm’s Message Resonate With Victims

Even if you could guarantee that every single person in your city saw your ad ten times a day, it wouldn’t mean a thing if those people didn’t connect to the ad.

When legal ads fail to produce a response, the content itself is usually to blame. Unfortunately, most attorney TV commercials fall into that category today, as television viewers grow increasingly sophisticated, cynical, and frustrated by the constant barrage of legal marketing.

You might think the answer is to avoid the TV market altogether, but the numbers are still overwhelmingly on television’s side. In fact, TV advertising for attorneys has increased by 68% in the last eight years alone.  Why? Because it works!

Television remains the single most effective medium for law firms looking to get bigger and better cases. No other media channel rivals the reach and power of TV. Attorneys who advertise on television are able to influence through sight, sound, motion and emotion. It’s a strong brand impression that can solidify your firm’s place in victims – or future victims – consideration phase. For more on modern consumer habits, read this blog.

With all this in mind, the key to you firm’s success isn’t to shun TV; it’s to master it instead.

Law firm branding that (A) stands out and (B) puts clients first will resonate with viewers. And it will grow the firm.

Of course, creating attorney branding that resonates with injured victims is easier said than done. So how can you connect with injured victims through the small screen in their living rooms?

After more than 35 years in this business, we’re sharing some of our most valuable insights below.

Your Perspective Isn’t Your Client’s Perspective.

Perhaps the hardest thing for attorneys to understand is that even though you and your prospective clients are looking at the same case, they have a completely different view of the situation.

Your view: “I am an experienced and talented professional who is ready and able to fight for the justice you truly deserve.”

Their view: “I’ve gone through something terrible, and now I have to deal with this mess… and find a lawyer to help make it right.”

Most law firms’ messaging comes strictly from the first point of view. That’s why legal ads tend to emphasize the attorney’s education, years of experience, personal background, accolades and success record.

But, as impressive as all that might be to your peers, injured people care more about their injuries than your résumé.

Here’s a different kind of ad. We produced this for one of our clients, and it effectively resonated with its target demographic. You’ll notice that it’s all about the victim, not the lawyer:

Who Is Your Law Firm’s Ambassador?

Think about some of the law firm commercials you’ve recently seen on TV (maybe even some of your own). Who was talking to you from the screen?

Nine times out of ten, it was one of the lawyers in the firm — probably a senior partner, or whoever’s last name is on the shingle. For some firms, that works. But it isn’t the only way.

The question isn’t “Who best represents your firm?”

Rather, it’s “Who best connects with your audience?”

Read: How to Identify a Spokesperson for Your Law Firm’s TV Ads

We tell clients to stop thinking of advertisements as sales pitches and to imagine them as stories instead. Viewers don’t care about sales pitches, but they do invest in stories.

The right person to tell your firm’s story should be credible, believable, natural, and client-oriented. That’s what law firm branding strategy is all about.

Do People Believe You?

Imagine that you’ve been invited to appear as the keynote speaker at a major conference. It’s quite an honor, and you’re very excited. But as you approach the podium, an advisor tells you, “Everyone in the room thinks you’re a liar. Good luck.” How might that change what you say (or the way you say it)?

The scenario’s an extreme one, but it’s helpful for understanding the relationship that most TV viewers have with attorney TV commercials.

Did you know, for instance, that many viewers assume that on-screen client testimonials are actually actors who’ve been paid to pretend they won big money in a settlement?

Even if your testimonials are entirely ethical and honest, if the injured victims at home view them cynically, what good are the ads doing you?

That’s why the goal in branding a law firm should always be to speak directly to viewers in a way they will not only notice but also trust.

Take the Jury Approach.

We give our legal marketing clients simple advice: speak to the public like you’d speak to a jury.

That might sound strange. After all, a TV ad is surely doing something different than an opening argument. Then again, isn’t making an argument what it’s all about?

Much like juries, TV viewers want to be convinced by a compelling argument. And as with juries, the most effective arguments come in the form of real stories, told with real human connection.

Think about all the mistakes most attorney advertisers make… would you ever do these things with a jury?

  • Talking about yourself or your law firm’s credentials instead of your client’s pain and suffering
  • Using a lot of generalizations and promises about how your side is better without getting into why
  • Talking at your audience instead of connecting with them
  • Skimping on evidence
  • Leaving your critical visual aids at home and choosing to simply stand there and talk instead

You wouldn’t rush into a jury presentation, and you shouldn’t rush into a TV campaign either. Take time to carefully craft an effective message built on empathy and believability.

Turn to Network Affiliates for Creative Law Firm Branding Strategies

The team at Network Affiliates knows a thing or two about attorney TV advertising. We produced one of the country’s very first lawyer television commercials, and we’ve kept our fingers on the pulse of lawyer branding ever since – continuing a storied history of putting creative new spins on the tried-and-true fundamentals of law firm branding.

The market has never been more crowded, but it’s also never been more lucrative. Now is the time to harness the power of television and take your firm to a higher level of success – and, we can help you do that!

Call our office and ask how we can impact your results (888) 461-1016 or simply contact us online today.

Current Challenges in the Legal Advertising Space – Part 1

It’s never been easy to become a lawyer. But these days, even if you passed the bar a few decades ago, just being a lawyer is hard.

Why? Competition is a big part of the picture. More law firms are competing for the same number of clients. And more money is going into legal TV advertising than ever before.

In a world where advertising is simultaneously more important and harder to execute, we think it’s crucial to have a solid strategy to achieve better results.

Network Affiliates has been a part of the attorney TV advertising space for as long as it has existed. We’ve stood as a witness to the shifting trends and mounting challenges, and part of our job is helping our clients sail those winds of change.

In life, the best solutions come from an in-depth understanding of the problem. To that end, we’re using our deep industry knowledge to map out the current challenges facing legal advertisers today.

We begin in this article with the internal challenges facing your firm from within your own industry. Later, Part II will look at the external challenges.

We want you to understand these challenges so that, in turn, you’ll understand how we can help you overcome them. Our goals for your firm are simple:

  • More clients
  • Increased referrals
  • Better cases
  • Increased ROI
  • A reputation as the local leader in your field

Our marketing strategies for law firms are, frankly, very effective at making these goals reality. They work for our clients, and they’ll work for you. But here’s what you’re up against.

Your Competitors Are Probably Outspending You.

Between 2014 and 2015, overall television spending grew from $69.2 billion to $71.1 billion. Forecasters expect that number to hit $81 billion by 2019. That’s less than two years away!

Do you know which industry is driving the biggest portion of that growth? You guessed it! Legal services.

Attorney TV advertising grew six times faster than all other ad spending from 2008 to 2014. And in 2015, it claimed the sixth spot on the Top 20 Broadcast Advertisers chart.

If you do much channel surfing in your all-too-scarce free time, you’ve probably noticed this uptick yourself. Attorney commercials are everywhere. There’s a reason for that: they are mightily effective.

This means you have a real challenge in front of you: your competitors are making significant investments in TV advertising. So how can you outdo them? How do you stand out from the pack?

National Players Are Entering Your Market.

Once upon a time, your biggest competitors were in an office two blocks away. Jurisdictional boundaries meant that law was a local game. But that’s changing.

Huge multistate law firms are aggressively expanding beyond their home states. They have effectively established themselves as national law firms “for the little guy.” And because they invest immense amounts in advertising, they’re able to quickly build a reputation from many miles away.

In addition, the internet has become a “national player” all its own. Millennials are on the cusp of adulthood, and they are a very web-savvy bunch. The internet is their playground. Free online tutorials and do-it-yourself services like LegalZoom are a big threat to local law firms.

Dentons recently announced an all-new, free-to-use Nextlaw Global Referral Network. It’s the latest blow to localized legal services, as it mechanizes lawyer referrals on a global scale.

All of this means your advertising efforts must set you apart not only from your rival across the street but also from all the other options available to your clients in our globally interconnected world.


Last year, Bloomberg Law reported that law firms are consolidating in record numbers in the United States. If you aren’t one of those firms, then your competitors are only growing bigger.

Venture Capitalist Money

According to, at least 18 major law firms are either considering or actively engaging in ongoing relationships with deep-pocketed venture capitalists.

It’s called litigation investment, and it’s a booming business. Essentially, non-lawyers are getting together and pouring money into blossoming law firms, recouping part of the profits as a return… just like they would in any other capital venture.

If that sounds unethical to you, you might be onto something. Some legal watchdogs expect ethics boards to crack down on the practice. But they haven’t yet, and there’s no way to know whether (or how) that might happen.

In the meantime, these venture capitalists only add to the mega-firm trend.

Law Firms in Local Wal-Marts

It almost sounds too weird to be true, but believe it or not, law firms are opening inside Wal-Marts around the country. We don’t mean that figuratively. You can actually walk into some of these big-box retailers and find a fully functioning law firm sandwiched between the game arcade and the nail salon.

ABA Journal and FindLaw have both profiled once-small law firms that have partnered with their local Wal-Marts to hang a shingle inside their warehouse walls.

While many lawyers look down on the idea, they also need to take it seriously. Wal-Mart has hampered (if not crushed) many a small business in this country. You can imagine that many of your prospective clients might find the idea of a one-stop shop for legal services appealing, especially in the personal injury field.

A Wal-Mart firm enjoys unparalleled visibility — something you’ll need to rival on television.

Tort Reform

There is remarkable political momentum toward tort reform in the United States. Already, many jurisdictions have made it harder than ever to bring these cases in the first place. Even a successful settlement or verdict comes with a smaller profit margin than ever before.

Indeed, of all the challenges we’ve enumerated in this article, tort reform might have already had the most profound impact on your business (especially if you’re practicing med-mal in a state with a pro-reform political climate).

So How Do You Survive?

It isn’t easy. The legal space is getting more crowded, and the competition is dense. There is good news, though. Television is a proven and reliable answer to the problem.

Law firms that make prudent investments in lawyer TV advertising see measurable results. Many tell us it’s the best decision they ever made. To stand out, though, you need the right mindset and a truly strategic approach. We address that approach in further detail in our latest white paper, A Legal Advertising Survival Guide for PI Attorneys.

Network Affiliates is an industry leader in law firm marketing. We know how to position you against your biggest competitors and produce results. In fact, our agency produced one of the country’s very first legal TV commercials. That’s how long we’ve been in the game!

Put our experience on your side. Call (888) 461-1016 or contact us online today.